Jazz-a-Belles Vanessa Heine, Jenny Bacon and Belinda Evans
Published: 17 January, 2013
by SEBASTIAN TAYLOR
NEW close-harmony vocal trio Jazz-a-Belles is opening the winter music season at Lauderdale House, Highgate, tomorrow evening (Friday) in their London debut. They’ll be singing numbers made famous by the likes of the great Andrews Sisters, Lady Gaga and Amy Winehouse. Also in the programme is some Kurt Weill, Schubert, Johann Strauss and Copeland.
The new trio is made up of classically trained professional singers – sopranos Belinda Evans and Jenny Bacon and mezzo Venessa Heine.
North London opera buffs will have heard Belinda Evans as Mimi in the Opera-Up-Close’s award-winning La Boheme three years ago in Kilburn.
“The idea for the trio came to us on a cold train journey in Berlin in January last year,” recalls Belinda, a Kilburn resident herself. “A career in the arts is as tough as it’s ever been and, as professional singers working in opera, musical theatre and on the choral circuit, we wanted to create our own unique group.
“Since coming up with the idea, we’ve been working hard to record our debut CD, launch our own website and perform two charity concerts in the West Country.
“We’re looking to sing in the 1940s style made famous by the Andrews Sisters. We’re singing two of their numbers at the Lauderdale House concert – Don’t Sit Under The Apple Tree and Carmen’s Boogie. They had a lovely barbershop style that can work so well with all sorts of music arranged for close-harmony singing.”
• Small-scale Italian opera specialist Villa In Canto is putting on a one-hour production of Puccini’s Tosca at Lauderdale House on Sunday evening. Based in Verona, the company is very much an Italian version of our own OperaUpClose, enlisting soloists from singers performing at La Scala, Milan, and elsewhere.